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From the B-Movie Vault: The Marine & 12 Rounds

June 10, 2024 | Posted by Bryan Kristopowitz
John Cena The Marine Image Credit: 20th Century Fox

From the B-Movie Vault Issue #10: The Marine and 12 Rounds

Hello, everyone, and welcome to the latest From the B-Movie Vault. I’m Bryan Kristopowitz.

The Marine franchise is the most successful movie franchise produced by WWE Studios, the movie studio owned and operated by the pro wrestling company World Wrestling Entertainment. According to the studio’s Wikipedia page, WWE Studios still technically exists but it seems to be all about making documentaries for TV and streaming now (the outfit produced the Bray Wyatt documentary Bray Wyatt: Becoming Immortal, which premiered on Peacock). It doesn’t look like WWE Studios is going to get back into the B-movie/genre movie making business anytime soon, which is a damn shame. The last real deal B-movie flick WWE Studios was involved in appears to be Blood Brother, which came out in 2018. The company hasn’t produced or released anything similar since then.

The most successful series of movies produced by WWE Studios is The Marine franchise, which has had six movies to date. The first one was released theatrically in 2006, while the next five were all released on home video (The Marine 2 starring Ted Dibiase Jr. came out in 2009, followed by The Marine 3: Homefront in 2012, The Marine 4: Moving Target in 2015, The Marine 5: Battleground in 2017, and The Marine 6: Close Quarters in 2018, all starring Mike “The Miz” Mizanin). I’ve reviewed all six of them, with my review for part 6 the only one still available on the internets (check it out here). I originally reviewed parts 1-5 back in the summer of 2017 in an epic 5 week marathon, and have decided that those reviews are going to be the focus of the next batch of From the B-Movie Vault columns. And I’ve also decided to add a bonus review of the Renny Harlin directed action flick 12 Rounds just because (both the first The Marine and 12 Rounds star the same actor so it makes sense to do this. No, it really does).

And so, without any further what have you, let’s start this The Marine franchise examination with my old review of the first The Marine movie, The Marine starring WWE legend and now bonafide big screen movie star Joh Cena, as well as Cena’s second big screen effort 12 Rounds. Enjoy.


The Gratuitous B-Movie Column Issue #421: The Marine

The Marine Marathon: Week 1

Hello, everyone, and welcome once again to the internets movie review column that has never had to jump away from an explosion in any kind of motion, The Gratuitous B-Movie Column, and I am your host Bryan Kristopowitz. In this issue, issue number four hundred and twenty-one, The Marine Marathon begins with a look at the movie that started The Marine franchise, The Marine, which hit movie theatres way back in mid-October, 2006.

Now, I want to say right out front that I wrote a review for The Marine when it came out back in 2006, but for whatever reason that review no longer seems to exist on the internets. I do remember not really caring for the movie, thinking that it was just a mess from multiple angles (tone, acting, story, even the action). That review, though, was the for “PG-13” version. The review I’m writing for the start of The Marine Marathon is of the “unrated” version of the movie, which features scenes and snippets and whatnot that were apparently not in the theatrical release. I have no idea what stuff was left out, though. The “unrated” version didn’t seem all that different from the version I remember seeing in the theatre. So while this review is, in a sense, the first time I’ve reviewed a movie a second time, I do like to think that it’s also a review for a movie I have never seen. Most of you probably don’t care about any of this preamble, but I just wanted to put it out there for full disclosure. There could be someone out there tracking this stuff, you know.

Yeah, probably not. Definitely probably not. Anyway, onto the review.

The Marine

Image Credit: 20th Century Fox

The Marine, or The Marine: Unrated, directed by John Bonito, is the big screen debut of modern WWE/pro wrestling legend John Cena and the second movie made by WWE Studios (the first movie was the slasher horror flick See No Evil starring Kane). It wasn’t a big hit when it came out, but I’m guessing that it must have kicked ass on home video and television since four low budget sequels have been made to date (It would eventually be five). And, as I said in my preamble, I didn’t really care for the movie when I first saw it. The cast was decent, and you could tell that star Cena had enough natural screen charisma to be a real movie star if he wanted to be, but the movie as a whole was just a mess. The tone was all over the place, the action was ridiculous, and none of it seemed to gel into a coherent piece. Was it watchable? Sure. But was it as good as it could have been/should have been? Absolutely not, but then that seemed to be the problem with most WWE Studios movies at the beginning. They were watchable and had good performances, but they could have and should have been so much better. Look at The Condemned with “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. That movie should have been easy and simple and badass as hell. Instead, it’s just a mess with a decent cast and some good action scenes and a shitty story.

Now, having watched The Marine again, in its “unrated” version, the movie isn’t as bad as I remember it being. It still has all of the same problems that it had the first time, but for whatever reason this “second” viewing went better than the first.

The Marine stars Cena as John Triton, a badass U.S. Marine who, after disobeying orders while on the ground in Iraq and subsequently rescuing captured fellow Marines singlehandedly, is discharged to civilian life. Triton isn’t too keen on leaving the Marines, but he has no choice but to accept his discharge (no one seems to be willing to stand up for him). He goes home to his hot wife Kate (Kelly Carlson) and tries to start living the non-Marine wife. Triton takes a job as a security guard at a high rise and is fired after his first day (he throws a guy through a window, although, to be fair, that guy was being an asshole). Triton is lost without the Marines. Kate suggests that they take a trip to nowhere in particular and have some fun. Maybe all Triton needs is some extended fun time to figure out what he wants to do. Triton and his wife hit the road.

While all of that is going on, Rome (Robert Patrick) and his gang of scumbag criminals jack a major jewelry store in downtown somewhere in South Carolina (they steal some diamonds), kill some cops, and blow up a bunch of stuff (Rome somehow manages to not get burned alive in the middle of a massive explosion involving a rocket launcher and a cop car. And this is all done in the middle of a busy intersection). After the carnage, Rome and his gang hide out in a hotel and try to figure out how they’re getting the diamonds out of the area while avoiding the massive manhunt that doesn’t seem to be happening at all (again, Rome’s gang killed a bunch of cops and blew up a cop car in the middle of the street in full view of thousands of people. Wouldn’t there be armies of S.W.A.T. cops and the FBI looking for them?). Rome’s big plan? With the help of the strange as hell but kind of funny Morgan (Anthony Ray Parker), Rome gets a “safe” car to drive out of the area. As long as they all keep their heads down and remain calm, they should be able to avoid getting arrested or any sort of trouble.

Yeah. Sure.

So the Tritons run into Rome and his gang at a gas station while on the road, and in an instant, all hell breaks loose as Rome and his gang kill more cops, take Kate hostage, and blow up the gas station. Rome himself didn’t want any of this to happen, but his gang panicked when some cops showed up to gas up, too, and then the shit went down. Triton gets knocked down in the melee, but he manages to get out of the gas station before it explodes and pursues Rome and his gang because, goddamnit, they have Kate (Rome also has Triton’s truck). After a spectacular car chase that ends violently, Rome thinks Triton is dead and that he can get on with his day. But then, suddenly, the cops are in hot pursuit (perhaps in this South Carolina, you have to cause two massive public explosions before the cops will get involved. If it’s just one explosion, the cops just can’t be bothered). And John Triton ain’t dead. John Triton is still in pursuit of Rome’s gang. Rome’s gang still has Kate. And John Triton, even with the discharge, is still a goddamn Marine.

So then some stuff happens, Rome and his gang go into the woods to try to avoid the police, they find an abandoned house/sort of general store, and decide to hang out there until the heat dies down. Triton hits the woods, too. After taking out some drug dealers who seem to think he’s a cop, Triton finds Rome’s woods hideout and comes up with a plan of attack. What is that plan of attack?

Go right in, rescue Kate, and kill as many bad guys as he can. Because John Triton is a goddamn Marine.

The Marine has a weird tone. It can’t decide if it wants to be a straight up action movie with some humor thrown in to break up the tension or a sort of action-comedy. It starts out as a full on action movie, with Cena’s Triton taking out multiple terrorists like a killing machine, but then, as it goes on, weird humor starts popping up. Triton’s one day job as a security guard seems like it should be in a different movie. When Patrick’s Rome shows up, holy crap, it’s absolutely ridiculous. Rome is supposed to be a vicious asshole, but he comes off as a guy who knows he’s in a movie and is playing up the fact that he knows what he’s doing is ridiculous. Patrick does a fine job and it’s fun to watch him goof off (the guy is a pro through and through), but should his performance be in this movie? I enjoyed the tone a bit more than I did when I saw the movie in the theatre, but it still bothers me. Why establish a serious tone at the beginning of the movie and then abandon it?

The action is big, and, at times, insane. When something explodes it goddamn explodes (check out the house explosion). The gun fights are loud and frenetic but there isn’t much back and forth in them, which is strange. The hand-to-hand fights are pretty brutal. Cena does a few wrestling maneuvers, like the epic choke slam (I think he also does a clothesline at some point). And the final fight, which lasts about five minutes total, feels like it goes on for half-an-hour. That isn’t a complaint, though. It’s a good fight with a nice jump scare towards the end (action movies don’t seem to do that anymore).

The movie looks fabulous throughout. I don’t know director John Bonito’s career (he’s only directed two movies total to date) but I’d suspect that he has some kind of music video background because The Marine has that sheen to it. I’d also suspect that Bonito is a Michael Bay fan as the movie looks like it could have been made by Bay. Would the movie have been more successful if it was a little less slick? Maybe. But then the slickness helps the movie seem much bigger than it actually is. I guess that’s a good thing.

John Cena does a great job as John Triton. He isn’t really acting here, but he knows how to perform and has more than enough natural charisma to make up for his acting deficiencies. As an action star, shooting guns and fighting and running (holy crap does he run a lot in this movie) and jumping from explosions, Cena is brilliant. It’s almost like he’s auditioning to be the next Terminator here.

Ha. And speaking of Terminators, the T-1000 hisself, Robert Patrick, is clearly having a good time acting like an asshole as Rome. He isn’t a physical match for Cena, but he doesn’t need to be. He has cunning and experience to back him up. Rome also knows how to wield a machine gun, and that always comes in handy in a story like this. Good stuff from Patrick.

Kelly Carlson does a decent job as Kate Triton. She doesn’t get to do much until the middle of the movie, when she tries to escape Rome’s gang and fights Rome’s psycho girlfriend Angela (Abigail Bianca), but then she isn’t really meant to do anything until then to begin with. She has no idea that her husband, the former killing machine, is still looking for her, so of course she’s going to try to find a way out of her predicament. Until then, though, she’s just trying to process the situation. Carlson also has good chemistry with Cena, which helps make you believe in their relationship.

Anthony Ray Parker gives the strangest performance in the movie as Morgan the henchman. He’s funny and weird, but you don’t really know why he’s that way. He complains about everything, especially when he’s trapped in the woods. He also breaks the fourth wall at one point. Manu Bennett is okay as the other Rome henchman Bennett, but he doesn’t get all that much to do until the middle of the movie when he has a major fight with Triton.

Abigail Bianca is insane as Angela, Rome’s unhinged girlfriend. She has a sadistic streak a mile long (she kills the gas station attendant for no reason) and seems to be into kinky sex, although the movie never really does anything with that. She does have a nice little fight with Carlson and I think you’ll be surprised at how Triton takes her out (it’s shocking and unexpected).

And Drew Powell has a few nice scenes as Joe, Triton’s buddy. Joe got Triton his security guard job and is pretty mellow about the whole “throwing a guy through a window” thing. It’s probably because Joe only gets suspended from his security gig as opposed to fired. I think it would be interesting to see Joe in a direct sequel to this movie, where he and his buddy John end up having to deal with terrorists in a resort hotel or something. That’ll never happen, but, still, it would be interesting to see.

The Marine isn’t a good movie. It is very watchable, though. It would have been better if director Bonito had picked a tone and stuck with it, but then I may be the only one who thinks that. Cena is an obvious star here. If you haven’t seen The Marine and you’re a Cena fan or an action movie fan, you should give it a shot. Just don’t expect anything spectacular or coherent. Again, it’s watchable, and sometimes that’s all you really need.

See The Marine. It’s worth checking out at least once.

So what do we have here?

Dead bodies: It has to be over 20. Cena takes out 10 at the very beginning. Well, it seems like he does.

Explosions: Yes, and most of them are freaking insane.

Nudity?: None.

Doobage: Disobeying orders, major league ass kicking, grenade attack, using a dead body as a shield, machine gun hooey, man-on-fire, neck breaking via kick to the side of the head, multiple massive explosions, off screen sex marathon, jewelry store robbery, hostage taking, cop killing, an exploding cop car, boredom, a lobby brawl with a guy getting thrown through a window, a hip and edgy hotel room scene, road trip hooey, gas pumping, a gas station attack, fire extinguisher to the face, clerk killing, exploding gas station, windshield destruction, car chase with machine gun hooey, car decapitation, a wild flip with a car exploding in mid-air, a major police search operation, a big ass knife, sexual harassment, a big net, 2 x 4 to the back of the head, chair bondage, wicked punches to the face, chair breaking, a beautiful jumping spin kick, shoulder block, a big ass fight with table breaking, giant stone column breaking, a generator, multiple outdoor brawls, oar to the face, glass bottle to the face, gut stabbing, a very skimpy bikini, choke slam city, a massive leg drop/boot stomp, a pile of dead bodies, a slow motion shootout, exploding swamp shack, police assault, attempted car sex, truck stealing, a heroic leap, a very unexpected death involving the front of a bus, exploding fuel dump, a truck driving through multiple explosions, a water jump, lead pipe attack, sledgehammer to the gut, attempted chainsaw hooey, exploding dock, a slow motion dive into the water, attempted strangulation via chain, a wicked chain throw with neck breaking.

Kim Richards?: None.

Gratuitous: John Cena, John Cena in Marine dress blues, John Cena in Iraq, “Germany,” a Scarface imitation, Robert Patrick, a bulletproof glass door, a CD that’s important for some reason but is never mentioned again, a discharged gun shell that hits the ground in slow motion, Robert Patrick walking away in slow motion from a massive explosion, John Cena as a security guard, Miller Genuine Draft, “I am a black man!” speech, breaking the fourth wall, a Las Vegas bumper sticker, unrealistically shooting at liquid gas on the ground which then leads to a fire and then an explosion, John Cena talking into a police radio, a Terminator 2: Judgement Day reference, a major twist, henchman killing for no reason, a funny phone call about a cable package, GPS, multiple massive explosions that seem to never end.

Best lines: “You guys ready to go home?” “Colonel, I’m a Marine. One of the best. Remember that.” “Excuse me, everybody down.” “Rome! You gotta hit me!” “Is this what you do all day?” “Don’t mess with me, pork chop.” “Why are you so angry?” “A toast to your first and last day on the job.” “I think I’m gonna go home and see my wife. Yeah, she’s hot.” “Man, that’s a minivan!” “Fuck you!” “Black men don’t drive minivans, Frank.” “Nice butt. What?” “Cadillac man, huh?” “Take the truck!” “Cops! That ain’t the cops!” “Somebody please shoot this guy! What does it look like we’re doing? Missing.” “This guy’s like the Terminator!” “What do you want to do with our little insurance policy? Oh, go to hell.” “Watch out for crocodiles. What’s the matter with you? There ain’t no crocodiles in South Carolina!” “If you and I are gonna be friends, you’re going to have to learn some manners. Bitch!” “Morgan! You are one crazy sonofabitch! I like that!” “That’s a creepy ass snake.” “Why does everything have to be racial with you, Morgan?” “You’re insane. Maybe. Good talk.” “I told you. I’m not a cop.” “Did something die in here? I don’t know, but something smells like baked ass.” “Cool,” “So how’s my Cadillac?” “Why so sad? Don’t like your new friends?” “There’s a crazy sonofabitch!” “What happened? A Marine showed up, that’s what!” “Gotta go, babe.” “Say hello to your wife!” “We should have gone to the beach.”

Rating: 6.9/10.0


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12 Rounds

Image Credit: 20th Century Fox

(Author’s Note: This review originally appeared as a “regular” movie review way back in March of 2009 when the movie first came out. That helps explain why the review looks a little different compared to my more “modern” reviews. I’ve cleaned it up a bit but it appears, more or less, as it did way back in 2009. This is also a review of the movie as it appeared in the movie theater, not the home video version despite the presence of the DVD cover. I may end up doing a re-review of this movie at some point in the future, just to see if I feel the same way. I don’t know yet. I mean, there are two more 12 Rounds movies, so why not do a full on 12 Rounds franchise marathon of some sort? That would be cool and worth doing, wouldn’t it? Wouldn’t it? Anyway, enjoy).

12 Rounds, the latest big screen effort from director Renny Harlin and WWE Films, is a shockingly bad, tedious borefest that may actually hinder star John Cena from working in further movies that aren’t associated with WWE Films (It obviously didn’t). While Cena’s performance is one of the flick’s few good points, even Cena’s considerable charisma and hard work can’t overcome a movie that undermines itself as soon as it starts.

Cena stars as Danny Fisher, a New Orleans Police Detective forced to run a gauntlet of twelve challenges concocted by international terrorist and arms dealer Miles Jackson (Aidan Gillen), who has sworn revenge against Fisher, who he blames for the death of his girlfriend a year earlier during a botched FBI sting operation. Fisher, a patrol cop at the time, was unable to save Jackson’s girlfriend Ericka (Taylor Cole) from being hit by a van as he attempted to arrest Jackson. In retaliation, Jackson has kidnapped Fisher’s girlfriend Molly Porter (Ashley Scott), who will die if Fisher is unable to complete the gauntlet’s twelve tasks. Helping Fisher is his partner Detective Hank Carver (Brian J. White), and the FBI agents involved in the botched sting operation, Special Agent George Aiken (Steve Harris) and Special Agent Ray Santiago (Gonzalo Menendez). As Fisher completes the twelve tasks, Carver, Aiken, and Santiago try to figure out how Jackson escaped prison, who he has been in contact since escaping prison, and what he’s really up to (it can’t possibly be simple revenge, can it?).

Now, as I said, the movie is undermined as soon as it starts by making it seem as though the movie is really about FBI Agent George Aiken and his quest to apprehend Jackson. We know it isn’t because Cena’s name is the first name we see in the credits, and his name is all over the poster, but that’s not what the actual movie seems to be saying. This is a Steve Harris movie. We see Harris’ Aiken burning with hatred and the desire to capture one of the world’s worst killers, who is in town to sell weapons. Aiken is constantly fumbling with a Hot Wheels car in his hand, opening and closing the small metal car’s hood. Why is he doing that? Why is Aiken so intent on capturing Jackson? By the time Cena’s Fisher character is introduced, I found myself wondering why the movie was wasting so much time with this beat cop character when he clearly isn’t all that interesting. We do get to see Fisher in action as a cop, though, running after Jackson’s car while trying to arrest him, which I guess is supposed to be exciting. It isn’t, but it’s supposed to be exciting. We know that by the constant hand held jittery camera bullstuff and incessant quick cutting, which wears out its welcome by the time the actual movie starts (the start of Fisher’s series of challenges). And by the time that happens, the flick’s only about twenty minutes old, which means there’s almost ninety minutes left to sit through.

Ninety minutes. It might as well be three hours because that’s what it ends up feeling like. Three very, very long hours.

The twelve challenges, or “rounds,” aren’t as interesting as they could be, either, because as far as I can tell there’s no significance behind the number twelve. If there is some reason that it’s twelve rounds, a stated reason uttered during one of Gillen’s Jackson’s myriad cell phone calls, I missed it. Why not eight rounds? Or ten? The best challenge is the one involving the elevator at the hotel (or the bank or whatever the heck it was) because we’re actually allowed to get a sense of what could happen if Fisher fails. The rest of them fly by so quickly it’s hard to care about them or to get excited by them. They just happen.

The movie also lacks an emotional core because it spends about two minutes on Danny and Molly’s relationship, which is supposed to be the driving force behind Danny’s decision to rescue her. We never get a sense of who these people are and why they love one another, which makes their relationship forced and bland. They have a relationship because they have to. It’s in the script.

So, if the movie isn’t about Steve Harris’ character, why is the opening chase scene even necessary? Damned if I know. The only thing it seems to establish is that Danny Fisher can run and run and run. Is it really necessary to spend so much time on that? The flick would have been better off starting slowly, letting us get to know Danny and Molly before Jackson shows up and starts acting nefariously. As for the whole “Fisher kills Jackson’s girlfriend” stuff, the movie could have easily handled that in a flashback or just off screen, having various characters talk about it. It’s not like the flick spends time letting us see how deep Jackson’s relationship is with Ericka, anyway. It comes off as nothing but a plot contrivance we have the misfortune of seeing (although I will say that the actual “car mowing the woman down” scene is pretty cool in a standalone kind of way). Just imply it, let Jackson act insane about it, we don’t need to see it.

And then there’s the way the movie completely undermines its star by trying to cover for his lack of acting experience by blasting through every scene he’s in where he isn’t running or engaging in some other kind of action. As I said above, Cena’s performance, on the whole, is pretty decent considering the movie he’s in. It’s fun watching him interact with people, you can tell that he’s working very hard to make each scene work, and he, above all else, has the screen presence and charisma to eventually make this action movie star stuff work. But Harlin just refuses to allow Cena to just act and play through a scene. Listen to Cena give his lines. Why is he always speaking so quickly? Why is everything such a rush?

Aidan Gillen is decent as Miles Jackson. He’s somewhat suave, sophisticated, but he also has a nasty ass vicious streak about him, especially when it’s time to kill people. His character starts to lose steam towards the end of the movie because his “real” motivation for the twelve rounds come off as total bullshit. Ashley Scott does an okay job as Molly, although she spends most of the movie captured and not doing much besides being tied up. Harris is fine as FBI agent George Aiken, mostly because he’s such a nasty prick when it comes to capturing Jackson. And Brian J. White does a good enough job as Fisher’s partner Carver, although you know exactly what’s going to happen to him as soon as you see him. If you’ve seen one cop action movie, you’ve seen them all if you know what I mean.

All in all, 12 Rounds is a complete waste of time, a massive failure of an action movie that shouldn’t be seen at all. Seeing it only encourages WWE Films to want to make more of these kinds of movies. Why can’t they make more movies like See No Evil, which actually came off as pretty good? Why is it so hard for them do this? (They did, eventually, get better at making movies).

As for Renny Harlin, I don’t know what to say. While this movie isn’t as awful as his last flick, The Covenant, it doesn’t really count as a mark in the “win” column for him. It’s somewhere between absolute total failure and not quite good enough to be mediocre. No one wants to be mired there, even if the pay is good. It’s just depressing,

Avoid 12 Rounds. It blows.

So what do we have here?

Gratuitous aerial surveillance of New Orleans, gratuitous mobile facial recognition van, gratuitous John Cena, dog feeding, gratuitous black partner, gratuitous Steve Harris fondling a Hot Wheels, gratuitous street chess, body dragging, gratuitous talking about Katrina, henchman killing, gut stabbing, off screen throat slitting, a briefcase full of diamonds, gratuitous John Cena running, gratuitous guy hiding out in a car trunk, ass shooting, gratuitous Raising Arizona reference, boat pushing, wild car flip, a great vehicular attack, pool playing, a flooded house, gratuitous hot chick fixing a toilet in her underwear, gratuitous cell phone calls, exploding SUV, exploding house, a car crash, tape bondage, a gigantic fat guy sitting on a porch in the background, gratuitous John Cena explaining what latitude and longitude are, a fire department all day ping pong tournament, gratuitous fire fighter hooey, safe deposit box breaking, gratuitous John Cena repelling down the side of a building, city bus stealing, motorcycle crushing, exploding bank box, gratuitous homemade bondage porno, gratuitous fat guy from Necessary Roughness, gratuitous John Cena trying to pull a humongous fat guy up onto the top of an elevator, ugly strippers, ice cream eating, more city bus hooey, sniper attack, face punching, gratuitous street car terrorist attack, using a car to stop a train, exploding apartment, floating money, another exploding truck, a helicopter fight, pool jumping, and flaming money.

Best lines: “Danny, you’re not feeding the dog, are you?,” “This is the thing?,” “We can now afford that pony you’ve always wanted,” “Such a waste of time,” “Ask her to open the trunk!,” “Oh, he shot me in the ass!,” “Who are you? What’s your name?,” “Dude, didn’t I tell you two months ago that you had to replace the stop valve?,” “Is this Officer Fisher of the New Orleans Police Department?,” “Poor Phil. He was really looking forward to those pork chops,” “Hey, say hello to your boyfriend,” “Guess he didn’t hear me about the whining,” “Surprise! Sometimes victory isn’t all it’s cracked up to be,” “Tell me you didn’t kill anyone under that thing,” “I need a saw,” “Shit! I can’t get through there!,” “Danny, you sound upset,” “I’m playing the game, Miles. That’s all that matters, right?,” “Don’t be a hero, Ray. It’s not in your pay grade,” “It’s the bus,” “You two lovebirds care for a sit?,” “She put me on hold,” “Never jump out of a moving car before?,” “Now, where are those body bags?,” “Make a good decision!,” and “Helicopter exploded. No big deal.”

The 411: 12 Rounds is an awful, awful action movie that I wouldn’t bother with, even if you somehow get a chance to see it for free. It’s just not worth your time. Hopefully, this flick doesn’t ruin Cena’s potential future movie career. It really is that bad.

Rating: 4.5/10.0


Check out previous issues of From the B-Movie Vault!

From the B-Movie Vault: Phantasm and Phantasm II

From the B-Movie Vault: Phantasm III: Lord of the Dead and Phantasm IV: Oblivion

From the B-Movie Vault: Phantasm: Ravager and John Dies at the End

From the B-Movie Vault: Scanners

From the B-Movie Vault: Scanners II: The New Order and Scanners III: The Takeover

From the B-Movie Vault: Scanner Cop and Scanner Cop 2

From the B-Movie Vault: John Wick and John Wick: Chapter 2

From the B-Movie Vault: Silent Night, Deadly Night and Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2

From the B-Movie Vault: American Ninja and American Ninja 2: The Confrontation


Well, I think that’ll be about it for now. Don’t forget to sign up with disqus if you want to comment on this article and any other 411 article. You know you want to, so just go do it.

B-movies rule. Always remember that.

The Marine

John Cena– John Triton
Robert Patrick– Rome
Kelly Carlson– Kate Triton
Anthony Ray Parker– Morgan
Abigail Bianca– Angela
Manu Bennett– Bennett
Jerome Ehlers– Van Buren
Drew Powell– Joe

(check out the rest of the cast here)

Directed by John Bonito
Screenplay by Michell Gallagher and Alan McElroy, based on a story by Michell Gallagher

Distributed by Twentieth Century Fox

Runtime– 92 minutes

Buy it here


12 Rounds
John Cena– Detective Danny Fisher
Aidan Gillen– Miles Jackson
Ashley Scott– Molly Porter
Steve Harris– Special Agent George Aiken
Brian J. White– Detective Hank Carver
Gonzalo Menendez– Special Agent Ray Santiago
Peter Navy Tuiasosopo– Willie

(check out the rest of the cast here)

Directed by Renny Harlin
Screenplay by Daniel Kunka

Distributed by 20th Century Fox and WWE Films

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action
Runtime– 108 minutes

Buy it here